Shopping for healthy foods for your child

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Shopping for nutritious food is the first step in practicing healthy eating habits. At the store, kids can help pick foods the family will eat together. Ask them to pick one or two fruits or vegetables. They will learn that their food choices are important. They may also be more interested in eating new foods that they chose themselves.

What to look for:

  • Colorful fruits and vegetables
  • Lean meats, such as chicken, turkey, and fish
  • Whole-grain breads and crackers
  • Low-fat or nonfat milk, yogurt, and cheese

Stop the nagging before it starts Remember: You are the parent. Your role is to see that healthy foods make up the biggest part of your food list. Set the rules and stick to them.

Let your child pick one food item. Don't restrict what kind of food your child picks, even if it's a sugary snack. But do limit the item to a small size.

Shop when the store is not so crowded, like mid-morning or later at night. You and your child won't spend as much time in line in front of the candy bars. Also, don't shop hungry. Try to shop after a regular meal or filling snack.

Healthy snack habits for kids

Kids love to snack. In fact, it’s good for them, if they choose healthy foods and keep portions in check. The following snack suggestions can help you and your family boost the quality of between-meal eating:

  • Hard-boiled egg
  • Yogurt
  • Low-fat string cheese
  • Carrot and celery sticks
  • Frozen grapes
  • Tortilla chips and salsa
  • Dried fruits and nuts
  • Apple slices with nut butter

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